The night before, eat a light meal. Do not eat or drink anything after midnight.
Depending on where the tendon is located, you may be given:
General anesthesia—blocks pain and keeps you asleep through the surgery; given through an IV in your hand or arm
Regional anesthesia—numbs an area of the body (eg, leg); given as an injection
Local anesthesia—just the area that is being operated on is numbed; given as an injection
Description of the Procedure
The doctor will make a cut in the skin over the injured tendon. The torn ends of the tendon will be sewn together or reattached to the bone. If you have a severe injury, a tendon graft may be needed. In this case, a piece of healthy tendon will be taken from another part of the body. This healthy tendon will be used to reconnect the broken tendon. The doctor will examine the area for injuries to nerves and blood vessels. Lastly, the incision will be closed with stitches.
Immediately After Procedure
The doctor may put you in a splint or cast. This is to keep the injured area in position for proper healing. The splint or cast will usually stay on for a period of weeks.
How Long Will It Take?
This depends on where the tendon is located and the severity of the injury. For example, if you injured the flexor tendon in your finger, it can take 45-60 minutes to repair.
Will It Hurt?
You will have pain during recovery. Ask your doctor about pain medicine.
When you return home, do the following to help ensure a smooth recovery:
Keep the dressing clean and dry.
Take medicines as prescribed by your doctor.
As soon as you feel able, resume daily activities, including work.
Have the stitches removed when told by your doctor.
Once the splint or cast is removed, work with a physical therapist to strengthen the area.
Be sure to follow your doctor's
Follow these guidelines to care for your splint or cast:
If you have a cast, do not get it wet. When you bathe, cover the cast with plastic. If you have a fiberglass cast and it gets wet, you may dry it with a hair dryer.
Bathe or shower as usual after the splint or cast is removed.
Call Your Doctor
After arriving home, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:
Signs of infection, including fever and chills
Redness, swelling, increasing pain, excessive bleeding, or discharge from the incision site
Pain that you cannot control with the medicines you have been given
Your cast or splint becomes wet, dirty, or broken
Skin below the cast becomes cold, discolored, numb, or tingly
Cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, or severe nausea or vomiting
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a